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Portable Panel Saw

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Project by TheRock posted 03-14-2016 12:33 PM 3069 views 20 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I hesitate to post this project because I manufacture the hardware kit for this saw.
I needed a panel saw a few years ago, so I designed and made one. It was always in the way so I recently made it portable with a knock down design. When collapsed, the saw is 40 inches wide and 12 inches deep. It fits into my PT Cruiser. It only takes 5 to 6 minutes to set up. You can swap the saw for the router in under 30 seconds.
The electrical hardware is not really part of the saw, but it sure makes it nice. It holds the cord out of the way and goes on and off in seconds.

The rear view shows the OSB legs that swing out on hinges. They make excellent places to store clamps.
No tools are required to assemble and disassemble the saw. The knobs store conveniently in one of the parts.

The carriages are made of 1/2” shatterproof polycarbonate. You can always see the cut line.

-- TheRock





18 comments so far

View CaptainSkully's profile

CaptainSkully

1401 posts in 2949 days


#1 posted 03-14-2016 01:43 PM

Hey TR,

No worries, mate. Full disclosure is a beautiful thing. You should put a link to your website somewhere a little more convenient than on your profile home page so people can check out your product, pricing, etc. I think it’s a great design for a very fair price. Well done, sir. I hope you do well with it.

I’m in Seattle and until recently, have been commuting to Tacoma to build aluminum sport fishing boats. I see you have a 253 number. Where are you located?

-- You can't control the wind, but you can trim your sails

View TheRock's profile

TheRock

17 posts in 1646 days


#2 posted 03-14-2016 02:20 PM

Good point. The web site is www.a2equipment.com
I live in Federal Way, WA and my manufacturing facility is in Auburn. I would be happy to give you a tour of the shop if you would like.

I am a research engineer for the Boeing Company by day. We just graduated from the garage last April. I am available at my shop after 3:00 PM.

-- TheRock

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

22527 posts in 2257 days


#3 posted 03-14-2016 02:56 PM

Nice work. I wish I had one in my shop. I don’t have any clue about where I would put one.

helluvawreck aka Charles
http://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View whsewardiv's profile

whsewardiv

29 posts in 470 days


#4 posted 03-14-2016 11:54 PM

um i can’t wait to buy one this would work great in my small shop…now i have to build/sell projects to buy it…

View Scott's profile

Scott

150 posts in 2362 days


#5 posted 03-15-2016 12:15 AM

Nice job!

How many HW kits have you sold?

View TheRock's profile

TheRock

17 posts in 1646 days


#6 posted 03-15-2016 01:32 AM

Scott,
Thanks for the kind words. We just sold our 650th Swap Saw™ kit this week end.
In order to make this hardware kit, I needed to buy my own extrusion die for t-track. I am also adding flip stops and micro adjusters to the product line.

I just can’t stop designing stuff.

-- TheRock

View TheFridge's profile

TheFridge

5535 posts in 876 days


#7 posted 03-15-2016 01:51 AM

Good for you bud. Always wanted a panel saw.

-- Shooting down the walls of heartache. Bang bang. I am. The warrior.

View Scott's profile

Scott

150 posts in 2362 days


#8 posted 03-15-2016 02:01 AM

That’s awesome! Great job. I was wondering if your were doing any extrusions.

In my previous life I worked in the defense industry, but not on aircraft. I occasionally got the chance to design some jigs and fixtures but there were almost always one-offs and used on only one project.

Right now, I’m just using an adjustable guide that I built for sizing plywood panels, but had been toying with a diy panel saw. I’ll keep your website in mind!

View TheRock's profile

TheRock

17 posts in 1646 days


#9 posted 03-15-2016 02:34 AM

I have designed four different extrusions for this panel saw.

The rails, T-track, the end plates and an extrusion for the body of flip stops and micro adjusters. (Flip stops and micro adjusters use the same extrusion).

Most of my design work has been for Wing Assembly. I have designed machines with 137 axies (not as impressive as it sounds), and assembly jigs that cover an acre (not the whole thing, but a good part of it).

All the best,

-- TheRock

View dgage's profile

dgage

52 posts in 2361 days


#10 posted 03-15-2016 03:27 AM

I work with lots of Baltic Birch. Do you offer a version that will cut 60” tall? Looking good! Congrats on the business.

View Desert_Woodworker's profile

Desert_Woodworker

319 posts in 605 days


#11 posted 03-15-2016 04:03 AM

I have been using a SSC panel saw with Forrest blades for 18 years.
Wisdom; what are the costs? Buy a time tested SSC Panel saw vs a kit? Here is what I have learned with 18 years using a SSC panel saw and router attachment. The router attachment is obsolete with the advent of the CNC. These build’em tools can be fun for hobby woodworkers, which is similar the ExCarve build your own CNC… Will this kit accomplish what you want to produce?

-- Desert_Woodworker

View TheRock's profile

TheRock

17 posts in 1646 days


#12 posted 03-15-2016 04:18 AM

Dgage,

The Swap Saw™ shown can cross cut material up to 51 inches wide. I cut Baltic Birch on mine from time to time. You just have to start with a rip cut. With a square sheet you can always choose your grain direction.

Hope this helps,

-- TheRock

View TheRock's profile

TheRock

17 posts in 1646 days


#13 posted 03-15-2016 04:21 AM

Desert Woodworker,

CNC machines are amazing devices. I was a 5 axis cnc programmer at Northrup Corporation in the 1980’s. I have written my own high level cnc programming language and two CAD systems. (Been around the block a time or two.)

CNC machines only replace panel routers if you can afford a CNC machine. For the rest of us, we will have to use obsolete technology that works and fits in a closet when we are done.

-- TheRock

View majuvla's profile

majuvla

8346 posts in 2258 days


#14 posted 03-15-2016 10:15 AM

Awesome design and features. I sure would make one if I have space in my garage workshop. Nice to have this project somewhere in reserve.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Desert_Woodworker's profile

Desert_Woodworker

319 posts in 605 days


#15 posted 03-15-2016 04:04 PM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4S76zR1gFWE&feature=iv&src_vid=tVubVWzgm_s&annotation_id=annotation_1161119617 here is a good video on this machine. I especially like the laser to see where you are going to cut. The panel saw looks like a good idea. As for making dado’s with a panel saw; Even if I could not afford a CNC; I would not choose this option. I say this because my SSC panel saw came with a 2hp router and special carriage for making dado’s I do not like it. I will look into a laser though. A panel saw is a great tool to have in your shop.

-- Desert_Woodworker

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